Wednesday, September 19, 2012

"Jesus Had a Wife !?" Duh, that's what we've been saying for 2,000 years!

Yep, the mainstream media is all abuzz about a 4th century papyrus (that's right, 3 centuries after Jesus).  It is the size of a business card and has a few partial sentences on it, one of which reads, "Jesus said to them, 'My wife ...'"  Reporters chime in with great insights such as "The New Testament is silent on Jesus' marital status," and "This may indicate that there was debate within early Christianity as to whether or not He was married."

Alright folks, here's the skinny:  Jesus was a celibate, as was the Apostle Paul (1 Cor.7:7,38)!  And Jesus told his apostles, "There are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs [celibates] for the kingdom of heaven.  He who is able to receive this, let him receive it" (Mt.19:12).

And here's the rest of the story:  The New Testament is filled with statements that Jesus is married - TO THE CHURCH.  The Old Testament frequently uses the image of Israel being God's Bride (often an unfaithful one).  As Messiah and God-Incarnate, the New Testament uses the same imagery for Jesus' relationship to Israel and the Church she blossomed into:  John the Baptist referred to Jesus as the Bridegroom, Jesus likened the Kingdom of Heaven to a wedding banquet that a king threw for his son, Paul wrote of the Church as the Bride of Christ in several places, and the Book of Revelation reveals the Wedding Feast of the Lamb (Jesus) and His Bride (the Church) as the culmination of history!

Jesus' ordained priests share in His special spousal relationship with His Bride.  They are simultaneously members of her, as well as special conduits through which Jesus ministers to and purifies her.  No wonder the Church echoes Jesus in calling priests to practice celibacy at the natural level - they're totally consumed with service to their Bride at the supernatural level!

Oh, and the other goofy thing connected to this "huge story" :  Another phrase on the papyrus reads, "She will be able to be my disciple."  ABC News reported, "It could have implications for women’s roles in the church, as it would mean Jesus had a female disciple."  Seriously, has no one in your news room even bothered to open the New Testament?  Never mind Priscilla, who partnered with the Apostle Paul from time-to-time, or countless other prominent women mentioned in Acts of the Apostles and the Pauline epistles.  Never mind the female disciples who acted as the first messengers of the Resurrection, or who stood faithfully beneath Christ's cross when all of the male disciples but John fled.  (And don't even bother yourself with the role of the Blessed Mother!)  Three verses in the Gospel of Luke are enough to show how ridiculous ABC News is:  "[Jesus] went through cities and villages ... and the Twelve were with him, and also some women ... Mary, called Magdalene, from whom seven demons had gone out, and Joanna, the wife of Chuza, Herod's steward, and Susanna, and many others" (Lk.8:1-3).

For the life of me, I don't know why this papyrus is a story!

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